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Marco Gualazzini February 11, 2013

Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in Italy.
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Feast day of Our Lady of Polsi, Calabria, Italy 2011

Marco Gualazzini (b.1976, Italy) began his career as a photographer in 2004, with his hometown’s local daily, La Gazzetta di Parma. His recent works include reportage photography on microfinance in India, on the media in Laos, as well as on the discrimination of Christians in Pakistan. He devised and took part in the creation of a documentary for the Italian national TV network RAI on the caste system in India. His photographs have been published in national and international publications including Internazionale, Io Donna, L’Espresso, M (Le Monde), Newsweek Japan, Sette (Corriere della Sera), The New York Times and Vanity Fair among  others. Marco is represented by LUZ photo Agency.

About the Photograph:

“This picture was taken last year in Calabria  during the solemn feast day of Our Lady of Polsi while I was developing a reportage about 12 journalists that were threatened by the Ndrangheta between 2010 and 2011. In Italy the so-called Mafia has different names in each region. In Sicily it is called Cosa Nostra. In Campania: Camorra, in Puglia: Sacra Corona Unita, and in Calabria: Ndrangheta. The Ndrangheta is considered the most dangerous criminal organization in Italy, but it is also among the most powerful in the world.”

“Last year when I read about the 12th journalist threatened by the Ndrangheta, I decided to take the portraits of these 12 colleagues of mine who were risking their lives to do their job. Soon I realized that I had to contextualize those portraits. It wasn’t enough to tell the story. So the idea was to show not only the faces of the journalists but also the newsrooms where they worked. To complete my report I decided to add some Ndrangheta landscapes that might be familiar for Italians, to remind us of the lands where these journalists are used to working. It was important to photograph the annual meetings, called Crimini, at the sanctuary of Polsi, so on the 2nd of September I went to the solemn feast day of Our Lady of Polsi. I was photographing in the rectory just before the Mass, when I saw this bolt of light reflected on the priests. I couldn’t not have taken this picture.”

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